Broken Home Series: My Site at the Resistance Gallery November 08


Broken Home Series
Resistance Gallery
A site response as performance and installation
By Beatrice Jarvis



This was an opportunity to work in a space for a very short amount of time to generate a creative response to it and served to function as a research exercise as to the functionality and transferability of my practice. Working in the resistance gallery for two days only and arriving only with a suitcase of props and costumes, this opportunity allowed me to develop a very organic and instantaneous response to the practicalities of the space and the architecture.


A woman who is lost in a heap of memories and fallen dreams desperate to construct a home through fragments of other places, constructing routes through paths she has lost in distant lands.

Arriving at the Resistance Gallery. Date and Time are ambiguous, a timeframe that is temporary and illusive. She holds a battered bleu suitcase, her hair is a mess, she looks tired, her body a souvenir to her expeditions, marks on skin as history of time past. There is a sense of vulnerability, jubilation, loss, triumph, gratitude and vulnerability as she enters the space. Possessions in hand, out of place at this gathering, a stranger, desperate to become a known.

Her History is that of a wanderer, she collects and stores images, maps and memories of other places that cannot be called home. It is as though the resistance gallery has become in her mind a symbol of home, which she has sought as a refugee and sanctum.

land of memory

Part One:Walk. Consume. Map. Create. Knowledge. Feel. Hope. Create.

She arrives into the gallery, as a guest. She walks a walk that somehow reflects searching. She sticks close to the walls. Body almost dancing in satisfaction to feel the walls against the skin. She repeats small dances against the walls; as though she is repeating memories she is having from other places. Her character is discrete, perhaps slightly uncomfortable for other guests who are unsure if she is performer or fellow pleasure seeker.

She begins to gain territory; am expedition begins, initiated by her first trip to the upper deck. She starts to places discrete labels on the walls, images, fragments of washed out maps ornaments, all very small, as though she is determined to mark just a little of her new home. Sometimes she rests on her thin white sheet which she whisks out of her suitcase, as she sits to examine her old maps, disillusioned as to how this need landscape no longer seems to fit the old roads she used to walk.

third home

After a while (23 minutes… punctuated by a large wrist watch) she begins to take Polaroid’s of the space, asking audience members to photograph herself in her new favourite places.

walk home

Items used at this point:

Audience Members

hidden forms

hide me

Spatial Summary

Begins entering the building, Walk to Dance in downstairs area. Interventions (Labelling) Commences upstairs, to downstairs, Photography of my favorite places.

Part two.

This short solo is designed to reflect upon what home means in the 21st Century, and is design to be non time specific in many ways, relying on emotional and spatial passage rather than particular time frame. This could be repeated twice in the evening in different places. Initially this was designed to be solid in place in the space, but on further thought and reflection, I feel that it is more appropriate that the home I will create travels, and as the titles suggests, this becomes an investigative piece; ‘Home Series’.

This solo is intended to be intimate and I have drawn on a lot of what I know about the history of the gallery as to the idea of this gallery once being used a centre for retreat, secret activity and escape from, ‘normal life’. This character is doing this solo in many ways not for an audience, and I want to challenge and play with how the audience will watch this piece, for this reason, I want to play with restricted view and contortion to see what is actually happening. This is not a piece designed for full frontal viewing, i.e. a traditional; audience performer relationship, rather, it is a happening and the audience will stumble across it, rather than go to watch it with normal performance conceptions.

keep out

Key themes and explorations:

Place and Placelessness
Cognitive Mapping
Relationship to site
Forming character
Psychogeographical Explorations through dance

All images and text copyright to Beatrice Jarvis.

For further images please click here

For web documentation please click here

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